1000 days of Drawing – Yay and Whoop to Me.

Today I have just drawn my 1000 consecutive daily drawing! To be honest I am very pleased with myself. It’s been a journey in to exploring my creative side and realising that being an artist is who I am and who I was always meant to be. 

When I started my daily drawing challenge in 2015 ,I don’t think I really realised what I was getting myself into. I had done a 30 day drawing challenge but committing to a whole year that was a different matter. So glad I did.Whats life without challenges, might as well set my own as it’s my rules.

Day1- How I Start My Day
Day1- 2015

There a lot more in between, I have surprised myself with how much art I have generated over the last 1000 days.

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Day 1000 – 2017

 

Why I started daily practice 

In 2014 I learnt how to make a basic repeat pattern, it’s something I had wanted to learn for years, In 2005 I worked as a  screen printer in a studio which was shared by surface pattern designers I was fascinated and chatted with them loads and they where happy to show me what they where up to, but the job changed, time and life took over and I did nothing about it. So I had learnt the basics I wanted to learn more and I knew I had to be committed to this as there are so many people with the same dreams.

I love to draw but knew I need to practice and experiment more get out my comfort zone and just get on with it By starting the daily practice I was not letting my art be on the back burner but making part of my daily life

Daily Practice is taking something you do to the next level by committing to daily practice be it art , writing , meditation, exercise – you make a decision that you want to challenge yourself to see where it takes you, the only way to do that is to practice there are no short cuts the more you do something the better you get.

Don’t get me wrong some days it’s a struggle life can get in the way but you do find the time as it becomes part of your day. Sometimes  I am having a bad day , over thinking , or just can’t be arsed. But making the commitment means I have to just do it, regardless of what the art looks like as at times I make shit art but its all part of the process  It gets posted to Instagram and I go and have a beer,tomorrow is another day .

Confidence in my abilities as an artist and in myself as a person has been the most wonderful thing that has happened to me over the last 1000 days  also learnt not to worry as much what other people think some will like your art some won’t just keep making it regardless, it’s all about daily practice. 

Tips on starting your own creatively daily practice 

  • You  make the rules you decided how you want to do it ,time, medium , size 
  • Start off with a 30 day challenge make your own list or follow somebody else’s 

Inktober2017 

  • This starts on the 1st of October you just make a drawing everyday that month there is a prompt list or you can make your own or just draw and see what happens.

(Last year I followed the prompt list last year but this year I am going to set my own.) 

  • Always have a sketchbook in your bag and don’t forget a pen I love my Lamy ink pen.
  • Try new materials use cheap sketchbooks make a mess go wrong, just have fun.
  • Draw things you have never drawn before.
  • You will find the time if you really want to do it, give yourself permission to have 30 mins a day to be creative. 
  • You dont have to show anyone just do it for yourself.                                                                          It’s so worth it for your mental wellbeing trust me I know.

I will continue with my daily drawing but will change and evolve but I know it’s part of my daily life and so happy it is.

The next stage is to get my website up and running it’s underway but it’s scary as this is the next big leap and just go for it there is no point making all this art and patterns if it’s all sitting in folders in my studio. Time to leap.

So I look forward to see where the next 1000 days takes me on my creative journey.

2 Years of Daily Drawing Time for Year 3- Painting 💚

Join me this July for 31 days of Mindful Mandala Drawing – Start your day calm

Recently I ran two Mindful Mandala Drawing Workshops in Spain they were very successful. Everyone that took part enjoyed themselves and I thought it would be fun to host  #31mandalas2016 starting on Friday 1st July

We all need time out, I find Mindful Mandala Drawing helps calm my mind and helps me relax.

WHAT YOU NEED

  • Time, 15 – 30 mins a day
  • Square of paper and a pen
  • Cup of tea (or what every you fancy)
  • Music (optional)

WHAT YOU DO NOT NEED

  • Ruler
  • Compass
  • Eraser / rubber
  • Perfection not needed.

Of course you can draw a Mandala with the help of these things, but for the purpose of this challenge you don’t.

REMEMBER

  • It’s not about the end result but the proses of growing your Mandala
  • If you make a mistake carry on, Please don’t start again, even if you think it’s all going wrong – Trust me on this
  • Enjoy yourself
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Start by drawing a circle in the centre of your paper. ( This is your seed from where your Mandala will grow)
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Add your 1st shape
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Then do the same again
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Keep adding shapes
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Turning the paper when drawing helps
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If it goes wonky that does not matter,it’s about the proses of growing your Mandala.
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Add more shapes
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Add detail (try not to over think just go with the flow)

 

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Keep going until your time is up or you feel you have come to the end. Yay you have drawn your 1st Mindful Mandala

If you have any questions please ask me. Find me on Facebook and share your Mandala on Instagram with #31mandalas2016

Look forward to seeing your Mandalas

Amanda Claire Designs

 

 

Mindful Mandala Drawing, Spain, Hula-hoops and my first solo travel adventure 

I am lucky to be spending 3 weeks in Spain, I am going on an adventure. I get to paint and draw, and see new and wonderful things, to be honest I am more than excited, just need to get away and when I return I will be ready for the next part of my creative life.Time to get my Etsy shop and website up and running and put 100% in to my business. I am an artist and that is my future. Where it takes me who knows but I am ready.

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My art kit, for my adventure.

I am spending 4 days in Barcelona with my lovely friend we will be celebrating my birthday, I love Barcelona it’s so beautiful and vibrant and of course filled with the beautiful architecture of Gaudi

Then of to a beautiful mansion to attend the Spanish Hoop holiday,it’s an hour from Girona in the middle of know where and it’s so amazing, time to recharge my batteries. I will be hula-hooping , swimming in a pool and just relaxing and enjoying being with my hoopy friends from far and wide, and meeting new ones.

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This wonderful photo taken by the very talented Joshua Smythe says it all.

I will be running my 1st Mindful Mandala Drawing Workshop , it’s very special to me to be going back there as 3 years ago I ran my 1st Mandala drawing workshop , I was so nervous but if I had not taken that step I doubt my love of Mandalas and the benefits of drawing then would have evolved to what it is now.

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Mindful Mandala Drawing

Writing this post and reflecting back I have achieved loads over the last 3 years, personally I have become calmer ,happier and able to deal with situations in a more relaxed way. But the big thing is I like myself and being in my own company,my creative side has bloomed and now could not imagine my life with out daily creativity.

I had some postcards printed  to take with me and sell,its fantastic seeing my designs in print so pleased how they turned out.

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Very happy with my postcards

 

After the week with my friends I leave them to travel to Granada, this will be the 1st solo traveling I have ever done. I need to do this as I want to travel alone have adventures, draw and explore , sit and sketch people and take in the surroundings at my pace. I have time to think and make plans, set goals and draw.

I have been away when I was 17 me and 2 friends went inter-railing for a month, ended up in the Greek islands.  When my son was 9 we went to Thailand, for a month with friends. I visit France regally

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Me and Sunny in Koh Pha Ngan 2000
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Me and my lovely Sunny having lunch in the sunshine 2016

So at the age of 46 (as of next week) I will be traveling to Granada , I am so excited, scared  all rolled into one.I have been practicing my Spanish for quite a while now and am ready to practice for real, I understand stuff but need to get the confidence to speak it.

I have found my self a lovely room in an apartment through Airbnb and will be spending a week there getting to know Granada I have booked a ticket for the Alhambra and have my art kit ready

When I leave Granada I am flying back via Paris a place I have only been very briefly when I was inte-railing , we left the station to get coffee and then got back on the train only staying in Paris for an hour. I will be spending 2 days there with a friend who will be showing me around it will be a lovely end to a fantastic holiday.

So here I go on the next chapter of my life, my sons grown up and living in his own place, working and doing his thing.(He is a very good artist very different from me lol) Now its time for me, I look forward to sharing my experience of my adventure when I return.

You can follow my Daily People Sketching and other drawing of my trip on Instagram 

Thank you for reading this 🙂

Change, taking a leap and Sofa-doodles

I am very behind with my blog posts, it’s something I find hard to do, or do I make it harder on my self by overthinking.. Mmm let me think about that.

At the end of last year I had made plans and had some sort of idea of what  I was going to be doing in 2016, at the beginning of the year it all that changed.

The job that paid my bills and allowed me the time to establish my self as an artist, was taking its toll on my mental wellbeing , I noticed I was becoming sad and the things I was experiencing at work where playing on my mind, then one Sunday after a particularly hard shift I broke down and cried.

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Calm you mind – Draw a Mandala

I knew then it was time to change, I was signed of for stress at work. I knew if I had carried on I would have had a break down and that would impact my life dramatically, 3 months on and I am no longer doing that job. I have realised that in life things just happen,sometimes they don’t impact much but other times it changes everything, first it throws you into turmoil but once you look at the bigger picture and realise it’s time to take that leap of faith and make your dreams reality. So I am leaping, not landed yet but I know the ground is there.

During the last few months I realised for me how creativity and good mental well-being go hand-in-hand and how important my art has been in supporting me through this topsy-turvy time. I found my self sitting on the sofa and just drawing in my sketchbook I call them my sofa doodles. Half the time I would be drawing before I had even realised but it helped calm my mind and relaxes me.

 

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Sunday morning sofa doodles

 

 

 

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More flowery sofa doodles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have been meditating on and off for over a year and know the benefits but decided that i at this time it was important for me so I have the Headspace app and now do this daily and it helps me loads.

Daily practice is key as even through all of this I have still kept up my daily drawing and this year its sketching people, I was quite daunted at first but unlike last year I have given my self up to an hour a day, it’s now part of my day, my confidence in sketching people has improved,  even been to life drawing classes,first time for years.

My plans have been altered,but change is good and I am going with the flow  with a smile on my face and with a happy heart I take my next steps. If I get a bit lost on the way I have the support of family and friends, and my online creative network is wonderfully supportive and helpful.

So look out world I am here and will finally be setting up my Etsy shop over the next few weeks. Staring with prints of my work, this is the next big step for me of getting my art out there.

 

Thank you

Amanda Claire Designs

 

 

 

2015 the year I completed my 1st Daily Drawing Challenge!

YAY, WHOOP and WOW feeling a massive sense of achievement. Today I finished my 1st yearlong daily drawing challenge. I chose to finish the year drawing a Mandala,with my favourite pen my Lamy.

Time for a little dance!

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2015 has been a truly creative year, its good to reflect and acknowledge your achievements.For me it was drawing something everyday and posting it online.When I started this challenge I did not realise how much it would change things, so I wanted to share with you things I have discovered through out the year.

Key things I have discovered this year

I LOVE BEING AN ARTIST I know this is my life, Its not the easiest route to take but I love a challenge and most of all I am proud to call my self an artist. I just love drawing so much.

CONFIDENCE – Improved 100% as an artist and on a personal level.

ABILITYI have drawn things this year I have never drawn before,and really enjoyed discovering with practice I can draw anything.

LEARNING– I love learning and have finally getting to grips with Ps.Had sewing classes learnt to use my sewing machine, so much fun. Also learning Spanish and French,a little every day slowly improving.

PRACTICE– this is the one thing that only you can do, its all about the practice, the more you do something the better you get.It really is that simple.

PASSIONMaking art, experimenting, having fun just being me the artist, the happiest I have been for a long time. Not worrying what other people might think of it but just enjoying the proses. some will like your art and some wont,its not a problem its just the way it is.

TIME– Have been getting more organised so I have time to make art and learn. I have got much better but know I can improve,being organised suits me. Oh how times have changed!

SOFA -DOODLES– I just love sitting on the sofa with my sketchbook and just drawing whatever I feel like, I let my pen wander and just relax, creative meditation

SKETCHBOOK Use them everyday, I love my sketchbooks they are my place to play and explore, and I never leave home without one. Its good to look back and discover sketches and then rework them, this year I have filled over 7.

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ONLINE COMMUNITY  I am lucky to have found an amazing online community of artist,designers,illustrators and surface pattern designs. we are from all over the world but we all support and help each other on our creative journeys.

Most of all when we put our minds to it we can achieve anything we want to.

As I enjoyed it so much I have decided to challenge myself in 2016 with Daily People Sketching

People

I found this wonderful blog post with 10 Tips for How to Sketch People

The one fear I want to overcome is sketching people; I have always seen and admired artists sitting in a café, sketching people, so this year I will embrace this fear and go for it.At the end of May I am off traveling for 2 months in Europe when I am away my  goal  is that I will be confident enough to sit in a café and sketch people. I have said it now,its out there.

I will give myself a time limit of up to an hour a day,use any medium.I have called it sketching as this is not about producing a finished drawing everyday but about me learning, looking and finally understanding the human form and how to capture it.

So you can follow me on Instagram , Facebook  and Twitter and see how I get on.

A big THANK YOU for all your lovely comments over this year,it spurs you on and helps you to continue and not to give up.

I would highly recommend taking up a daily challenge for a year, its so worth doing.

 

 

Week 10 and 11 My World Drawing Challenge

Good morning,

it’s a beautiful day in Brighton, sun is shinning and I must catch up with my blogging 🙂 Why i keep putting it off I am not quite sure, writing is not my strong point but the more I write the better it will get. I know that’s true as my drawing has improved so much since starting this challenge, the last few weeks have been hard as I seem to be leaving my daily drawing to the end of the day, then I am tired and not sure what to draw, but I just get on with it and its at those times some of my favourite drawing happen, just enjoying the proses not thinking about the end result.

Have a lovely day 🙂

                Day 64 My world Drawing Challenge          Day 65 My World Drawing Challenge

                Day 66 My World Drawing Challenge          Day 67 My world drawing challenge

                Day 68 My World Drawing Challenge          Day 69 My World Drawing Challenge

                Day 70 My World Drawing Challenge          Day 71 My World Drawing Challenge

                Day 72 - My World Drawing Challenge          Day 73 My World srawing challenge

                Day74 My world Drawing Challenge          Day 75 My World Drawing Challenge

                Day 76 My World Drawing Challenge          Day 77 My World Drawing Challenge

My World Drawing Challenge – Week 4 Round-up

I am a bit late with this weeks round up, so a short post with pictures. 🙂

Had a lovely walk on the beach and was inspired by the things I found
Had a lovely walk on the beach and was inspired by the things I found
Found a great book in the charity shop on 18th century textiles. Very inspiring indeed :)
Found a great book in the charity shop on 18th century textiles. Very inspiring indeed 🙂
Again inspired by the book, i do love drawing florals so much :)
Again inspired by the book, i do love drawing florals so much 🙂

 

Flowers in red :)
Flowers in red 🙂

I decided that drawing florals is not a challenge to me, as I love them and have been drawing them for years. so I decided for the next week I would draw things I see out of my windows.

Part view from out of the window, from my desk :)
Part view from out of the window, from my desk 🙂
I sat on the balcony all wrapped up cosy and warm listing to chilled music and decided to draw windows :)
I sat on the balcony all wrapped up cosy and warm listing to chilled music and decided to draw windows 🙂
This is a view of my balcony from the comfort of my rocking chair, A few plants still about :)
This is a view of my balcony from the comfort of my rocking chair, A few plants still about 🙂

My World Drawing Challenge Week 2 round up

A bit late this week with my round up, I have been managing to upload my drawing to instagram and my Facebook page daily.

I am really enjoying myself with this challenge, and lucky to have a fellow classmate and pattern friend Lisa who works under the name Studio Noodles   http://www.studionoodles.com/blog/4584266119 who is also taking part in  the daily drawing challenge, we can keep each other going.

I do love a cup and saucer, painted in gouache and i used my trust Lamy :)
I do love a cup and saucer, painted in gouache and i used my trust Lamy 🙂

its real good to draw things that you would not normally, I am getting out of my comfort zone, Yay it’s about time.

Random small things found on my desk.
Random small things found on my desk.
This is one of my best possessions, if you asked me to choose between radio or tv, Radio would win hands down,. when i am drawing  love having the radio on, great plays and stories and it how I hear the news. I LOVE MY RADIO.
This is one of my best possessions, if you asked me to choose between radio or tv, Radio would win hands down,. when I am drawing love having the radio on, great plays and stories and it how I hear the news. I LOVE MY RADIO.
I have had this little bird for years, it sits happily on my shelf, this is the first time i have drawn her. :) I will be making a little bird pattern.
I have had this little bird for years, it sits happily on my shelf, this is the first time i have drawn her. 🙂 I will be making a little bird pattern.
This is a doodle drawn while i was in some mandatory training on Monday.  I have to draw otherwise i fidget :) this has been included as this is My World in my head.
This is a doodle drawn while i was in some mandatory training on Monday. I have to draw otherwise i fidget 🙂 this has been included as this is My World in my head.
I love to rescue plants and this one was left down stairs in the lobby, so i popped it on my window sill in the kitchen, and it flowered!! my first orchid, very happy :)
I love to rescue plants and this one was left down stairs in the lobby, so i popped it on my window sill in the kitchen, and it flowered!! my first orchid, very happy 🙂
I really like poppy heads and i have kept this for years. this deserves a pattern being made from it :)
I really like poppy heads and i have kept this for years. this deserves a pattern being made from it 🙂

One of the things i decided to do was make patterns inspired by my drawing challenge, so i chose the drawing from day 1 with the lemon in, and came up with this

I am really pleased how this has come out, My mum really likes this so i am going to attempt to make a apron for her. my sewing skills are not brilliant in fact they are pretty dreadful. mmm i think i might need some help :)
I am really pleased how this has come out, My mum really likes this so i am going to attempt to make a apron for her. my sewing skills are not brilliant in fact they are pretty dreadful. mmm i think i might need some help 🙂